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Small Space Living

We live on our front porch in the summertime. 
I thought I would share what we find necessary for comfortable front porch sitting.
This is a great place to play with pattern mixing!
Pillows / Poof / Rug / Tables / Garden Loveseat (similar, similar)

My husband is a smoker (I know, yuck).  Shockingly I use to be a smoker.  I smoked from Teenage years until I was 27.  I quit because I use to get so sick in the winter (bronchitis and sinus infections).  Now I didn’t quit based on a choice, I was very ill for about 3 weeks.  My Doctor suggested I quit smoking while taking some meds to see if I would get better quicker, so I did.  I just never picked it back up.  Being married to a smoker while quitting was very hard.  Many times I wanted to light up but I didn’t.  He fully supported me and would get real mad if I “snuck” a smoke.  Anyhow, the point here is he has to smoke outside, so we tend to live on our front porch.  The back yard is an option too, but the back yard is dirt (no grass) and not as nice.

We rent, hoping to buy later this year, so I tend to fill pots with flowers because I can’t rip out the ugly bushes.  On the front porch and going up the stairs are full of flower pots.  It’s fun because I can move them around for different looks.  I also decorate the back yard with flower pots so it doesn’t look so drab.  The little plants you see on the side tables are $1.99 from Trader Joe’s!  I collect small bowls and dishes just so I have something to put the tiny plant in.  It’s size is perfect for a side table.
On to how and why I decorated the porch this way.  We love being comfortable, and when you sit on the porch as much as we do it’s important.  The loveseat was my grandmothers.  It’s part of a set with two chairs and a small table.  The table got damaged when a tree fell on it, we still have it but I need to find a welder who can reshape it (that doesn’t charge an arm and a leg).  As cute as the loveseat is it is far from comfortable for a long period of time, so cushions are key!  Sadly I can’t find a cushion that fits the seat, but my Aunt offered to make me one.  I just need to email her the measurements and my colors.  I am excited about a custom cushion, but being very careful on what I choose because it will be years before I replace it.  Having a color scheme is important!  I decorate my whole house around red / maroon.  There are accents all through the house accept our bedroom which is white and brown.
I have the chairs in different parts of the yard.  Like the one above is in the front next to a lounge chair.  This way when I am tending the one bed we can plant in, usually veggies, I can sit down.  The lounge chair gives someone the opportunity to sit with me.  It’s always important to have at least two chairs together, this invites someone to join you.  The pillow was one I picked up at Wal-Mart a few years ago for $7.  They have lasted very well and are easy to clean.  Both chairs have the same pillow, so if I want to put them together they will match.  As you can see I need to sand and repaint the chairs, but that’s the beauty of wrought iron.  I am leaning toward painting them white this time.  I painted these about 6 years ago and they have weathered nicely.
As you can see the backyard it drab.  We have a simple wrought iron table that my husband obtained from a job he did (it’s amazing what people leave behind or don’t want).  When we have guests I put out a table cloth to brighten things up. 
Wrought Iron will last forever if you take care of it.  You can see just past Dolly, the other chair from the set.  We love having fires so having chairs around the pit is important.  Again, it’s all about sitting areas (don’t mind the big canoe).
Why I choose to decorate this way.  As I said we sit outside a lot.  There are lanterns with battery operated candles set on timers to all come on at the same time everyday.  As the sun sets we have light, which doesn’t draw bugs.  Another must are candle holders with Citronella Candles.  We live in the country and mosquitos are terrible.  Not only do we need a little relief we don’t want our guests to be uncomfortable.
I hope you got some ideas from my rambling
Things to take away
1- Pattern mixing can be fun but make sure you have a base color to build from.
2- Created sitting areas with at least two chairs,
3- Potted plants are perfect if you don’t have room or can’t change the landscape
4- Invest in quality furniture that will last forever, Décor should be inexpensive so you can change it
5- Lighting is key, battery operated candles don’t draw bugs but give light to see
6- Citronella Candles keep everyone comfortable, and you can have fun holders as décor